What is a Surety Bond?
A surety Bond is a three party guarantee put in place to protect the party requesting the bond.
The surety (bond carrier) provides a financial guarantee to the obligee (i.e. the State Department of Licensing) that the principle (dealer/business owner will fulfil his or her obligation (usually titling related, paying off loans on trade-ins, etc)
Our agency focus is on Auto Dealers. We offer affordable bonds for Wholesale and Retail Auto Dealers.
Apply online or contact our Dealer Bond Team toll free 855-396-0488Back to TopWhat is required to obtain a Dealer Surety Bond?
Surety companies review credit history and request your social security number when applying for a dealer bond.
Other factors come into play such as debt to income, past bond experience, dealership owner or management experience or business ownership experience.
It is also beneficial if you are a member of the State Independent Auto Dealer Association.
If you have bruised credit or otherwise have a negative credit history we suggest you discuss this with our dedicated Dealer Bond Agent at time of application. Having this information up front helps us better prepare your application to ensure the best rates. Back to TopHow much is a dealer bond?
The required bond amount (called the bond penalty) varies from state to state and depend greatly on your credit history. All bonds are subject to credit approval.
Our preferred rates (on approved credit) are as follows:
Washington $220 for an annual bond and $550 for a 3-year term.
Oregon $375 annual or $938 for a 3-year term.
For rates in other states contact us toll free 855-396-0488Back to TopWhat is a Garage (dealer) insurance policy?
A Garage Policy is an insurance policy package specifically designed for the automotive industry. Auto Dealers and Auto service or body shops all require a form of Garage insurance.
Coverages include Auto and Premise liability, medical payment, and other forms necessary to protect the dealership operations.
Optional coverages include, but not limited to Dealer 'open lot' inventory coverage, uninsured/underinsured motorist, property coverage, business income and extra expense, and coverage for employee drivers and furnished auto coverage for owners and officers.
Each policy is customized to fit the needs and budget of the dealership. You can begin your application online or call to visit with one of our dedicated garage insurance agents toll free 855-396-0488
Back to TopWhat information is necessary to apply for a Garage policy?
Our dedicated team of Garage insurance professionals will be happy to walk you through the easy information gathering process step by step.
Items that will be necessary include the business name and entity (sole proprietor, LLC, or corp name), physical address of all locations, mailing address, and the names, drivers license info, and date of birth for all employees, and number of dealer plates you have or anticipate having if you are a start-up dealership operation.
Back to TopWhy am I required to provide my drivers license info?
A Garage / Dealer insurance policy is in part a Commercial Auto policy. Due to the exposure of autos being driven it is necessary for the insurance underwriters to review driving records for owners and employees to ensure licenses are active and driving history of the applicants meet the guidelines for policy approval. If a prospective employee has a poor driving history the insurance carrier may choose to increase the rate or even exclude that driver from coverage until his or her record improves. Each carrier has a specific set of driving history guidelines they consult when rating a policy. Back to TopHow much does a Garage/Dealer policy cost?
Garage policies are annual policies.
Policy pricing is based on multiple factors including number of staff, size of inventory, desired limits, coverage options selected, and your geographic location.
We work with many start up dealers and most small start up packages range around $3200 annual. Some more, some less.
Our dedicated Garage/Dealer insurance professionals will be happy to provide an affordable quote specific to your needs. Back to TopI'm a start-up auto dealer, can you assist me?
We love start-up auto dealers. Our experience is much broader than insurance and bonding. Contact our team toll free 855-396-0488. We are happy to offer guidance and suggestions as you maneuver the paperwork and requirements necessary to start your business.
We have solid partnerships with the Independent Auto Dealers Associations and happy to connect you with their office for additional resources. Back to TopI am in a rush, how quickly can I obtain insurance coverage?
A commercial insurance policy for a dealer or garage operation can take some time. At Shepard & Shepard Insurance Solutions we pride ourselves on working swiftly to ensure prompt coverage. Although we recommend budgeting 6-10 days we can usually turn around a policy much quicker. If you require immediate coverage contact our Dedicated Garage Insurance team toll free 855-396-0488 and we will do our best to secure coverage within 24 hours. Back to TopDo you offer Garage/Dealer insurance in my state?
Although we are expanding, our primary focus is the Western USA including Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, Montana, Utah, California, Nevada, and Arizona.
If you are located in a state not listed call us Toll Free 855-396-0488. If we don't currently have access to your state we will be happy to refer you to one of our agency partners, Back to TopDo you offer financing?
We do offer easy financing on our dealer insurance packages and on the higher cost bonds.
Most often it will require 25% down to get started.
For business planning purposes a start-up dealer should anticipate an initial start up cost of under $1500 to cover a preferred bond and the initial payment on his or her dealer policy followed by a small monthly payment. Back to TopDo you accept Checks, Cash, and Credit Cards?
Yes. We are able to accept many forms of payment and happy to set up an easy financing plan to make it as affordable as possible to purchase your insurance and bond. Back to TopIs Shepard & Shepard involved with the dealers associations?
We are proud to be longtime, active members of WSIADA, OIADA, ISIADA and NIADA dealer associations. We are also associate members of the ASA service shop association.
Our founder, Todd Shepard, is a regular contributor, providing content and articles on insurance and selling techniques to the Washington State Independent Auto Dealers Association publication, Front Row.
You will usually see us attending the various association conventions and education fairs. Back to TopDoes Shepard & Shepard have hands on auto dealer experience?
Yes! Some of our team members have worked hands on in the auto industry as well as insurance. Our founder spend 18 years in the auto & RV business prior to entering the insurance business and has written two books on the subject, Insuring Your Dealership
and Insuring Your Auto Shop .
These are available for no cost to dealers and shop owners. To order a copy contact Nate Elder toll free 855-396-0488 and he will mail a copy to you. Back to Top